Maria Holland

辛德勒的名单 (Schindler’s List)

In Uncategorized on April 29, 2010 at 10:39 pm

I’m good about spacing out restaurants so that I don’t tire of them, but fail at this when it comes to particular foods (especially fruit!).  I’ve been through the mandarin oranges phase, the milk tea phase, the pomelo phase, the kumquat phase, the strawberry phase, the peanut baozi phase, the tangyuan phase, and am now wholeheartedly in the mango phase.  The typical morning this week has begun with a walk down to the beach at Baicheng, buying three mangos, then peeling and eating them while watching an episode or two of Big Bang Theory.  Since the weather has been extraordinarily nice every morning this week, it’s been a perfect morning routine. 

My last midterm, Oral, was this afternoon.  I chose to the option to “introduce a movie that made a deep impression on you” in a three-minute speech.  Behold:

给我印象最深的电影就是辛德勒的名单。是基于真实的故事,在第二次世界大战发生了。有一位德国人,他叫辛德勒。德国入侵波兰后,他在波兰开了一家工厂。他认为,去战区开业就会发财。因为犹太人收入比较低,所以他的工人都是犹太人。当时就是大屠杀,所以犹太人很辛苦。比如说,他们住在城市的一小块儿,不能随便出去。可是辛德勒当初不在乎他们的情况,除了利润以外什么都不管。后来,犹太人的生活越来越危险,他们开始被关进集中营,也被杀了。辛德勒逐渐意识到什么人的生命都很宝贵。他开始用权力,关系,和钱来赎他的工人。到底,他的财产都花光了,可是他宁可没有钱,也要保命。一共,他救了一千多命。电影最后一个情景就是在辛德勒的墓地。有很多人在走过来,把小石头放在他的坟墓上。这些人都是辛德勒的犹太人,和他们的骨血。现在骨血超过六千,都是被辛德勒救命了。我觉得这部电影很有意义。其实让我记得,我们的行为,不管大不大,可能有很大的后果。

The movie that has made the deepest impression on me is Schindler’s List.  It’s based on a true story that took place during the Second World War.  It’s about a German named Schindler.  After Germany invaded Poland, he started a factory there, thinking that if he started a business in a war zone he would make a lot of money.  Because the Jews’ wages were relatively low, he hired only Jews.  The Holocaust was going on, and the Jews’ lives were very hard – for instance, they all lived in one section of the city and couldn’t freely go out.  But Schindler didn’t care about their situation.  Actually, he really didn’t care about anything besides profits.  Later, the lives of the Jews became more and more dangerous, as they started being sent to concentration camps and being killed.  Schindler gradually realized that the lives of all people are precious, and he started to use his power, his connections, and his money to redeem his workers.  In the end, he spent all of his money, but he wanted save lives even if it meant having no money.  Altogether, he saved over a thousand people.  The final scene of the movie shows the cemetery where Schindler is buried.  Many people walk by, placing small rocks on his grave.  They are all Schindler’s Jews and their descendents.  The descendents now number over 6,000, all of whom where saved by Schindler.  I think this movie is very meaningful.  It reminds me that our actions, no matter how small, can have large consequences. 

I was surprised when I went in and the teacher said we couldn’t even glance at written notes, but apparently I had succeeded in memorizing the new words (WWII, Holocaust, concentration camps, redeem, cemetery, grave, and descendents).  Operation: Midterm is deemed a success!

This evening, Aleid, Katrine, Eunice, and I celebrated by going out to a night market.  We had malatang for dinner followed by a generous sampling of street food (including pancake-like things!).  There was lots to see and we all bought something – a pair of sandals for me.  Yeah, they’re technically men’s shoes – so what?  In China, the definition of a “good shoe” is “one that comes in size 40”. 

On the bus ride home, Eunice and I noticed an prime example of an important cultural difference.  In China, it is acceptable for friends of the same gender to hold hands, link arms, lean on each other and – apparently – sit on each other’s laps.  I’m getting more and more used to it – obviously I don’t freak out if a girl friend grabs my hand, but I’ve also largely stopped making assumptions about two guys walking together, one holding an umbrella and the other with his arm around his friend’s waist. 

But then we saw a guy sit on his guy friend’s lap, said friend opening his legs to accommodate the other guy.  Eunice and I were both so surprised, and tried very hard not to stare!  If I ever sit on a guy’s lap, it’s a perching-on-the-knee sort of thing, certainly not sitting between his open legs!  For girls, the only situations I can think of that would make sitting on another girl’s lap acceptable would be a) crowded car rides, b) really cold place, or c) a little kid.  And between guys . . . Well, I can’t picture it as any thing but a joke that would last no longer than 2 seconds.  When I asked YongZhi about this a while back, he said that the only rule is you don’t touch skin.  Apparently, everything else goes!

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  1. You’re very right about the differences in culture. Even being Chinese but having grown up in Canada, my perception of interaction is very different. The most recent time I went back to HK, my cousins and I went out to play basketball a while after our meal. As we walked towards the court, the (2 of them) put their arms around me. For a moment, I relented, but didn’t want to make the situation awkward. A

    pparently, it’s very common for guys to do that in HK culture and isn’t considered “gay” to North American standards. In Canada, I would dare say that if you see two guys holding hands, you already have an assumption (even if they’re straight) and meanwhile in HK, it is hard to tell (unless they’re completely outright) whether 2 guys holding hands or have their arms around each other are simply because they’re family/close friends, or whether they actually are homosexual.

    It’s kinda unfair here that if I were, as a male, hold hands with another male that I’d probably be assumed gay, meanwhile, girls can without assuming they’re lesbian :P

    • Yeah, for the most part I think that a lot of the way our society views physical contact is irrational. This is why I haven’t really commented on it up to now, because in a way I find it refreshing that people can comfortably touch each other without things being assumed about them. BUT . . . I don’t think it’s irrational to think that sitting this way is inappropriate, because I think that no matter who (/what gender) the two people are.

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